paris fashion week: hakaan

(images via vogue)

if i’m to be blunt (as i generally try to be), i’ll confess that i’ve never really ‘gotten’ how designer hakaan yildirim, with his eponymous hakaan line featuring photographer mert alas as creative director has managed to get so much love. i mean, sure, friends in important places and offering clothes which, each season without fail (see s/s 2011, a/w 2011, s/s 2012, a/w 2012) remind us of the ‘us vs. them’ mentality of the fashion industry, showing off exactly what the models have, whilst simultaneously informing us that if we don’t have it all to put on display, what’s the point in getting dressed up? (a notion the fashionies love), but is that really all it takes?

well. just maybe (as it turns out)…not so much. after taking last season off the paris fashion week catwalks when some of his collection was lost or stolen a few days before the show (a fact which, whatever else, i truly am sorry for), on his return with his a/w 2013 range, i was quite surprised when i was searching for background information to find that…there was surprisingly little of it. and not only that, but save for getting mariacarla boscono to open his show (and let’s be realistic, she’s picky about her catwalks, but isn’t like, retired or anything), he doesn’t seem to be scoring the mostly-retired catwalk veteran/borderline supermodel girls of yester-year to walk.

so. is the lesson that maybe when all one has (mostly, at least) is simply showing off the lovelies (and, to be sure, he still managed to score some of the biggest models of today’s catwalks) in their gilded body cages…even this, even this gets old eventually? i mean, like, i don’t totally want to rip the designer, or anything like that, largely because i do believe some of his tailoring is quite good, and when he shows pants or frocks on the more covered side, he can at once manage steamy and wearable, but on the other hand, much as i said with the anthony vaccarello show, surely these dudes realize there’s more to a woman’s life than simply looking sexy, alas?

well. maybe not. anyway, on the critical front (mainly because i don’t want to linger on these thoughts longer than i’m required to), we heard a clipped wwd offering that “Hakaan Yildirim returned for fall with a lineup of sculpted-to-the-body pieces that had a tough, dark edge. Imagine a biker chick glammed up for a black-tie affair. Dresses were either floor-length or ultrashort; some looks featured bustier tops, like the cinched white one with long panels in the front and back, paired with white transparent pants. The clothes were often executed with a heavy hand and didn’t always fall on the right side of sexy.”

and in a more positive vein, according to fashion bomb daily, the designer “has a knack for producing sexy standout attire, fit for the red carpet. His latest Fall 2013 collection is no exception, with enough embellishment, form-fitting silhouettes, and sheer fabrics to please celebs and party girls the world over. Sticking to a palette of exclusively black, red, and white, the designs are predominantly fête-ready, though a few functional wares are on display for those who prefer practicality over eccentricity.”

yet interestingly, style, too, was relatively unimpressed, arguing that “(t)he task for Yildirim today, then, was to give himself a jump-start….Working in only black, white, and red, he showed long column gowns with a gothic sensibility, tiny slipdresses that combined matte and shine, and elaborately constructed, peplumed bustier tops worn with sheer trousers or a see-through pencil skirt—plus a couple of leather Perfectos for tossing over it all. Yildirim is a fairly talented dressmaker. The long black gowns with a bit of white peeking out from a single sleeve or the neckline were special. Overall, though, the collection was a real mix, one that lacked a convincing point of view. It wasn’t the clincher he needed.”

finally, though, vogue remained more optimistic (as we could expect, of course): “They came one-shouldered and long, and body-sculpting and short to skim thighs with pleated little skirts and brush shoulders with spaghetti straps. There was detail on the bust and necklines, unfolding into shape to show off some flesh and there were sheer panels to line the length of the body on the side, while other dresses were sheer across arms and shoulders to be sexy and smouldering. Leather – the badge of being fashion fierce – was there too, but we had occasional soft lines for bombers and sweatshirts and the sparing use of feathers: wrapped around a waist, or curving and curling around the body…these are clothes that require gumption and sass to be worn. And if you have it, flaunt it.” so he has a few fans, still, so there’s that. i guess.


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